Well, the archaeologists from Cal have packed up their trowels and carted off the bones of what they believe is an adolescent Columbian Mammoth that were discovered last month in a San Jose drainage ditch (sometimes called the 'Guadalupe River') by local resident Roger Castillo (who was walking a live specimen). The land officially belongs to the Santa Clara Valley Water Authority, who stand to inherit the bones, including two well-preserved tusks, after the scientists have finished studying them.

Of course, during the late pleistocene period when this tusked beast roamed the Bay Area, San Jose would have been about a hundred miles or so from the coast, and probably a bit nippy. In fact, it wouldn't be the Bay Area at all, as the bay wasn't formed until the end of the last ice age around 10,000 years ago -- after any larger cousins to the Elephant had already died off or been hunted to extinction across North America.

While it's too early to know exactly when this particular beast lived, the idea that man and mammoth might have coexisted here is intriguing. Our flight of fancy involves a harried caveman commuter with a job in the nascent tech industry (Wheel 2.0 -- Now with 33% fewer corners!) circling around, looking for a place to park his mammoth for two hours when it broke down due to starvation. Have you seen the price for a bushel of native grasses these days?

Via CalPatriot. Artist rendering of a Columbian Mammoth skeleton found in the La Brea Tar Pits from tarpits.org.

lupus familiaris